7 Ways to Protect Your Office and Employees During Flu Season
January 9, 2020 | AUTHOR: Tammy Wright
According to WebMd, Americans suffer a billion colds each year and the CDC predicts this flu season could potentially be a very bad one. So, how do you protect your employees and keep the workplace safe and clean during flu season?
Encourage employees to stay home when they are sick.
Encourage employees to stay home from work when they are sick. The flu and other viruses can be spread through coughing, sneezing and unclean hands. One of the best things you can do to create and protect a healthy workplace is to make it clear that sick employees need to stay home.
Clarify workplace sick leave policies.
Is it clear when and how people can and should use sick and/or vacation days to cover illness? Does your company have flex time if employees need to care for family members that are ill? When people are starting to feel well again, are they able to work some of their time from home or take half-days in the office? Review your policies with human resources and make sure that employees are aware of their rights and responsibilities when it comes to sick leave.
There are many updates that employees need. First, consider an email to all staff at the start of flu season with a reminder about the CDC’s best practices for avoiding the flu.
Also include a reminder and updates on your business’s policies on sick leave and general recommendations like not returning to work until fever-free for 24 hours. Be sure to communicate with your employees if there is any type of outbreak of an illness or the flu and what they should do in response.
Provide Cleaning Supplies.
Keep a steady supply of sanitizing wipes for employees to use. Clean keyboards, doorknobs, refrigerator handles and more. Have an easily accessible supply of sprays and paper towels, too. Use disposable cleaning items, rather than sponges and cloths can harbor and spread germs.
Wash your hands. Wash your hands. Wash your hands.
This can’t be emphasized enough. Consider signs in break rooms and restrooms reminding employees to wash their hands for at least twenty seconds. Also provide hand sanitizer in locations throughout the office.
Encourage employees to take care of themselves.
A healthy diet, exercise and regular sleep all help keep the immune system working properly. Encourage employees with healthy snacks in the break room and opportunities to get up and move around.
Professional cleaners are trained in best practices for cleaning your whole office. Whether it’s during flu season or throughout the year, they are able to make your space both sanitized and beautiful looking. They know standards on disinfecting and can help keep the workplace healthy. Or, if you’ve had an outbreak of illnesses, they can clean and disinfect even the smallest of areas.
Flu season can be unpredictable, but we can all do our best to help restrict its spread. Encourage your employees to regularly wash their hands and to get adequate rest and nutrition, provide a clear communication on sick leave policies to all staff, have a steady supply of cleaning and sanitizing supplies for easy wipe-downs of surfaces and consider hiring a professional cleaner to meet all your office-cleaning needs.
Partner with a commercial cleaning company, like Office Pride Commercial Cleaning Services, to provide assistance and help keep you and your workplace clean and healthy during flu season and throughout the year. Call your local Office Pride for a free, no-obligation quote. Check out our locations!